your visiting schedule at special care unit? — The Bump

your visiting schedule at special care unit?

how often during the day (or for how long) do you visit your little one? they like us to come around her feeding schedule (which is every 4 hours). we've been going to 2 or 3 feedings/day. we love spending time with her and holding her, but all of the back and forth can also be very sad. i also feel guilty not being with her all the time!

i was just wondering if people have tips for a visiting schedule that works well for them and the little one.

once my husband goes back to work, i'll probably be visiting on my own during the day, and then he'll visit on his way home from work.

Re: your visiting schedule at special care unit?

  • First, do not feel guilty about not being there all the time. I was told by the nurses and social worker that I needed to get out more or I was going to go crazy. They also told me to sleep more because I sort of looked like a zombie half the time.

    The schedule that worked for me was visiting twice a day. Once in the morning for a feeding, and once in the evening for a feeding. Each visit was about three hours. This gave me time to go home and pump in privacy, run errands, and get the house ready for DD.

    I was told repeatedly that I was there a lot (to help calm my fear that I wasn't) and that a lot of parents visited much less than I did. You have to do what works for you but still allows you to keep your sanity.

  • Each hospital has it's own visiting hours but here it is 9am, 12pm, 3pm, and 9pm. We would stay at the Ronald McDonald house from the 9am visit til after the 3pm visit then go home and come back at 9pm. It is VERY tiring I know but here you cannot visit at any other time than that.
  • At first I was there all the time - like it was my job. Then I started to get run down and knew I needed to take some time at home. I ended up getting into a great schedule of going for her 9am feeding, kangarooing, pumping, going to lunch, then staying for her 1pm feeding until she was asleep again.

    Basically, staying for two feedings. Then I would spend the rest of the afternoon/evening resting at home and pumping for the next day. Sometimes I would change it up and go for the 5pm and 9pm feedings so I could sleep in at home and get things done in the morning.

    Do not beat yourself up over not being there every moment. Your little girl is in great hands. The nicu nurses LOVE those little babies!

  • My husband had to go back to work right away so he could save his time off for when we brought DD home.  In the begining I actually wasn't allowed to drive yet, so DH dropped me off at the hospital on his way to work and I stayed until he got off in the evening.  It was VERY tiring, but it was my only option if I wanted to see her at all during the day.  Thankfully our NICU stay was relatively short.  DD was discharged at 12 days old, and only 9 days after I was.  I would not have been able to keep up that schedule much longer. By the end of it I was so tired and swollen I could barely move.

    Lilypie First Birthday tickers Lilypie Third Birthday tickers
  • ijackijack member
    I would go around 10 in the morning for rounds and then stay until about 4... go home for a couple hours and then go back from about 6-10. I know that some people don't like to spend that much time there, but I couldn't not be there... even when we couldn't hold her, I would still just sit next to her isolette. 
    Emma - March '08 Quinn - August '11
    Need help with high fat food ideas? Chunky Monkey
  • Hi Dani.  How is DD doing?  And how are you doing?  I have been thinking of you 2.  I was going to page you on the Aug board but I was not sure if you would see it or not. 
    Pregnancy Ticker

    DS1 12-31-1999, DS2 5-7-2008, DS3 8-3-2010
  • hi 618! how are you doing?? what are your latest updates? 

    we are doing okay. i think our baby is handling this whole thing better than we are. her only issue right now is feeding. she does one or two feedings from a bottle and then the rest through a feeding tube. otherwise, she is doing great. it just looks like it will be a long, slow process.

     my husband and i are just trying to adjust emotionally to having her away from us. we're trying to experiment with different visiting times so we can avoid feeling so depressed all day. we know everything will be fine, and we feel so lucky just to have our little girl (it could be so much worse). but it's definitely scary. (and when we do have time with her, i don't want to be crying/teary the whole time).

    thanks for checking on us :)

  • We have now dropped form the 8% to the 4% as of Monday.  And now I am having the same BS with my doc as you were.  My HR doc says take him at 37 weeks but my OB wants to wait until 38.  UGH it is so frustrating. 

    Are they saying how long she will be on a feeding tube?  I am really sorry,that sucks.  DS2 never had a problem feeding.  How far away is the hospital from you?

    Luckily we are only 2 mins from our hospital.  We are preparing ourselves this time around for him not coming home with us.   Every time I had to leave the hospital with DS2 I cried.  It was always so hard.  So I know how you feel. 

    Keep me updated on how she is doing.  I will be thinking of you guys.  

    Pregnancy Ticker

    DS1 12-31-1999, DS2 5-7-2008, DS3 8-3-2010
  • ugh- that is the worst. i don't understand, when it gets this close, why they don't just defer to the parents. the baby is full term, and IUGR is such a vague, uncertain thing. why not just let the parents make the final call? i was just complaining about this same issue to my husband this morning.

    anyway, keep me updated. i'll be thinking about you guys as well.

    we're about 20 minutes away from our hospital. not a bad trip at all, but just a bit long when you start talking about multiple trips/day. i think we'll start a better routine on monday of visiting in the morning, hanging around until the afternoon, and then just calling it a day.




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